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Database - Alliance francophone pour l'accouchement respecté (AFAR)

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Currently 3106 records
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Created on : 13 Apr 2004
Modified on : 02 Dec 2007

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Bibliographical entry (without author) :

Identification of the causes of intrauterine death during 310 consecutive autopsies. European Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology and Reproductive Biology 2004;113(2):134-138.

Author(s) :

Horn L-C, Langner A, Stiehl P, Wittekind C, Faber R.

Year of publication :


URL(s) :…

Résumé (français)  :

Abstract (English)  :

OBJECTIVE: Evaluation of causes of death in stillborn infants.
METHODS: During a five-year period, 310 consecutive autopsies of stillborn infants were performed using a standardized protocol with systematic examination of all major cranial, thoracic and abdominal organs including microscopic examination. RESULTS: In 71%, the intrauterine death (ID) occurred up to the end of the 37th week of gestation. Thirty-seven percent (115/310) stillbirths represented with maceration and about one-half with minor or major malformations. Thirty-one percent (53/171) of them were responsible for intrauterine death. In 83% (44/53), the intrauterine death of the malformed fetus occurred before the end of 37th week of gestation, most of them (48/53, 90.6%) were small for gestational age infants. In 75.5% (234/310), the placental villous tree and the umbilical cord represented pathologic conditions. In 191cases (61.1%), utero-placental pathology was responsible for intrauterine death. Intrauterine infections and traumatic lesions were accompanied by intrauterine death in 2.2 and 1.3%, respectively. In 15.2%, unexplained intrauterine death (because of severe maceration, the placenta was not available for autopsy or insufficient clinical data) occurred.
CONCLUSIONS: Perinatal autopsy may be valuable in three ways: the confirmation of ante-mortem diagnoses; the identification of unexpected disorders; and exclusion of other (perhaps inheritable) conditions which might be have caused the intrauterine death. Clinically valuable information, obtained from the autopsy, can be improved by high autopsy rate and performing perinatal necropsies by specially trained pathologists.

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Keywords :

➡ foetus growth ; stillbirth

Author of this record :

Cécile Loup — 13 Apr 2004

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